Friday, March 13, 2009

And with patience, a Woodcock or two

Returning to Kingston the following night (March 12th) after confirming the location with a local birder, I exhibited more patience and was rewarded by a few American Woodcock peenting and one or two singing. In fact I managed to lock on one twittering as it circled upwards and was able to watch the entire display in the gathering gloom. It was relatively cold, which might suggest that there could be even more on a balmier evening. Peenting started shortly after 7pm.

Update: on March 17th I returned to this place, saw one Woodcock and heard another one. The Woodcock I saw displayed right over my head and did a close fly-by on descent before landing in an open patch and started to peent. On another display flight I saw it land in a different open patch and watched it while it "broadcast" the peent by pointing in a different direction after each call - there's obviously quite a different volume depending on which way the bird faced. There was also a little soft "hic" call once or twice before each peent and a low soft growl call when I saw it flying around at low altitude - this might have been the result of the one bird reacting to another one peenting.

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